There’s always money in pizza, pasta, and wine; just ask the folks behind Angelina’s Pizzeria Napoletana. That longstanding restaurant group, known for its blistered pies and fine-casual ambiance, is branching out next week with a stunner of a new space at Laguna Niguel’s Ocean Ranch Village called simply Bottega Angelina.
Owners Shokoufeh and Filippo Fusco have completely overhauled this 10,000 square foot space (3,000 of which is outdoors) with guidance from Kelly Architects (Tatel, Soulmate, Gucci Osteria) and Shawmut Design and Construction . Together they’ve opened up the possibilities of what a restaurant can and should feel like in 2021, peeling back walls to showcase ocean views and dousing the main dining room in gold-tinted, blue-tinged opulence. The entire tan and taupe-toned property offers some 350 seats, including an on-site cafe and marketplace for retail items, coffee drinks, and takeaway goods and pastries.
The menu is still being pulled together for the formal opening next week, but expect options from across the Italian spectrum. There will be pizzas, of course, some with touches of truffle on top, plus pastas, simple starters like prosciutto and pickled figs, and plenty of desserts and cocktails to go around.
Overseeing the restaurant side is chef Aaron Zimmer, the group’s director of culinary operations, and executive chef Filippo Piccini, who hails from Tuscany and spent years working at Michelin-level restaurants across Italy. Rebekah Eastman is on as executive pastry chef (after working at places like the St. Regis in Dana Point and Bourbon Steak), while Piedmont-born Vittorio Homberger runs the room and wines as general manager.
The new Bottega Angelina opens wide November 3 at 32441 Golden Lantern in Laguna Niguel, with dinner hours to start. Check Instagram for the restaurant’s extension into all-day hours, which should come in a few weeks.